CSULB Recreation Society Sets Up Green Spots on Campus Lots During PARK(ing) Day

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CSULB Park(ing) Day

CSULB Recreation Society transforms several parking spots into temporary green spaces during Park(ing) Day. Photo of 2010 event by Nancy Mathews.

The Recreation Society at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) will host its third annual PARK(ing) Day event on Friday, Sept. 16, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Parking Lot 15, which is adjacent to the campus’ College of Business Administration building.

Created in 2005, PARK(ing) Day is an annual, worldwide event that invites citizens everywhere to transform metered parking spots into temporary parks for the public good.  Its intent is to challenge people to rethink the way streets are used and reinforces the need for broad-based changes to urban infrastructure.  Since its inception, PARK(ing) Day has blossomed into a worldwide grassroots movement and, in 2010, included more than 800 “PARK” installations in more than 180 cities in 30 countries on six continents.

This year at CSULB, student organizations, various campus departments, faculty, staff and community members will come together to transform a section of Parking Lot 15 into a park for the day.  Students from the facilities design class from the Recreation and Leisure Studies Department will create the design for the envisioned environment-friendly “green” park.

“PARK(ing) Day is a simple gesture that is part of an extraordinary event intended to bring attention to conservation and creation of open space.  While critical in all locations, it is of particular importance in dense urban areas such as Long Beach,” said Jon Cicchetti, landscape architect and instructor for the CSULB facility design class who is spearheading the creation of the park.  “Led by recreation and leisure Studies students, CSULB presents the subject in a fun and engaging manner.  As an instructor you know you’re on to something special when college students are willing to dedicate some of their precious summer break to facilitate this remarkable event.”

Among those contributing to this year’s PARK(ing) DAY transformation include the university’s Art Department, Japanese Garden, Kinesiology Department, Recreation and Club Sports and the College of Health and Human Services Student Council.

“This is our third year participating.  Our goal this year, in response to President Alexander’s vision, is to reach out beyond the campus and interface with our Long Beach community.  We’ve garnered support from Long Beach Park Recreation and Marine Department and downtown Long Beach businesses,” Cicchetti explained.  “We will be providing a fun educational experience for all ages via a multi-layered approach of details and broad concepts for open space conservation and creation.”

The city of Long Beach and various community businesses and corporations plan to connect their parks with our park for the day via a bike path that will enable bicyclists to travel from one park to the next, ending at the CSULB campus park.  This year’s event will also include “Art in the Park” led by the Art Department, “Composting 101” taught by CSULB students, and myriad student-led activities and games.

The public is welcome and encouraged to enjoy the park for the day.

For more information, contact Rita Hayes, faculty advisor to the Recreation Society, at 562/985-7351 or e-mail her at rhayes@csulb.edu.

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